Meet MSM's staff members: introducing Mariëlle Daemen.


At MSM, we are proud of the more than 47 staff members who are committed and eager to fulfill our mission in offering management and entrepreneurship education, advice and research to individuals and organizations from all over the world. To become more acquainted with our staff members and to show you how it feels for them working at MSM we will each month highlight one of our staff members. This month the spotlight will be on Mariëlle Daemen.

Let me introduce myself…
My name is Mariëlle and I am Senior Communications Officer at MSM. I studied Business Administration with a specialization in Marketing Communications. I combined my study with a full-time job. On one hand, this was tough….but on the other hand, it helped me to take a well-considered decision to focus on Marketing Communications, as this was what I liked the most in my job.

No day is the same, which is what I like in this very diverse job…
As Senior Communications Officer I am - together with my colleagues of the Communication Department - responsible for the branding of MSM and the promotion of our education programs and international development projects. No day is the same, which is what I like in this very diverse job. One day I am busy with developing communication plans and creating content to attract students to our programs. The next day I am supporting the organisation of MSM’s Annual Graduation Day for our graduating students. Furthermore, I am supporting the recruitment team with all kind of activities like setting up organic and paid social media campaigns, optimizing the website, creating mailing campaigns, developing brochures and organizing webinars. Important in all these on- and offline communications is that these are consistent with and strengthen the MSM branding.

Before joining MSM, I have been working at Philips in different positions. I have been working in market research and marketing communications, as well for the Telecom market as for the Automotive market, both very interesting and dynamic markets.

I strongly believe that education is important for the development of people, organizations and countries…
MSM attracts students from around the world and these students come to MSM to fulfil their ambition of pursuing a Master in Management or MBA degree, or to follow a short Executive Program. In addition, MSM offers capacity-building solutions to clients around the world. I strongly believe that education is important for the development of people, organizations and countries and as such, I am proud to be part of an institute that highly contributes to this. It is also inspiring to see all these students coming to our campus in Maastricht to make their dream come true and especially the sacrifices they sometimes have to make for this. I always admire their strength and persistence.

MSM really is the place where the world meets
I have always worked in an international environment and for me that is certainly an important requirement in a job. However, MSM is much more than just an international working environment. MSM really is the place where the world meets. I still remember the day that I came for my job interview. I was waiting in the entrance hall, which was packed with students from all kind of countries, waiting to go for a work visit. At that moment I immediately thought, “this is the place I want to work” and I enjoyed working in this multi-cultural environment ever since.

In my spare time….
As I said before I strongly believe that education is important for the development of people and countries, or as Nelson Mandela once said: Education is the most powerful weapon, which you can use to change the world. As such to my opinion, education is a basic right for every child in the world. Unfortunately, in many countries, children do not have the opportunity to go to school. One of these countries is The Gambia, where I personally witnessed the poverty and as a consequence the lack of access to education for Gambian children. This is why in 2015 I founded Kids2School together with family and friends. Through Kids2School, we try to give access to education to children in the Gambia with the help of sponsors and donors. Starting with 16 children in 2015, our foundation has now grown to 88 children who are going to school with the help of Kids2School. Needless to say that this keeps me busy in my spare time, but it is a very fulfilling way to spend my time.  It also means that I go to The Gambia at least once a year to visit our sponsor kids and their schools. Furthermore, I like to go on city trips, enjoying a nice dinner with friends, going for a long walk and sometimes just be lazy when time allows.

The persons that I admire in my life are…
There are more persons I admire, but here I would like to name two persons in particular, for a completely different reason. The first one to mention is Jaha Dukureh, a Gambian activist fighting Female Genital Mutilation and child marriage in Africa through her NGO Safe Hands for Girls. I briefly met her once when she was giving a guest lecture about her work at Maastricht University.  I really admire her not only for the important fight she is fighting but also for her determination, despite the problems her work was causing her at first with her family and community.

The second one to mention is Prof. dr. Rob Pieters, Medical Director and initiator of the Princess Máxima Center for Childhood Oncology in Utrecht. In his mission to cure as many children and adolescents with cancer as possible, he was at the core of the creation of the Princess Maxima Center, bringing together all the highly complex care and research for children with cancer. I never met him in person but I saw the documentary about the realization of the center and his drive and persistence to make it happen, was inimitable. Nice to mention here is that Dennis Christmas, Senior Lecturer and Head of Healthcare Innovation at MSM is  one of the founding board members of the Princess Maxima Center. Last July, the students of the MBA Healthcare Management specialization enjoyed a work visit to the Center.

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